Seek God!

Father David Epps's picture

A few weeks ago, a gentleman attending our church’s Men’s Prayer Breakfast asked me, “What can we, as the men of the church, do to make your life easier?”

The first answer I gave was very serious and from the heart. I said, “Show up.” Show up at church, show up at Bible study, show up whenever something is going on to worship, study, and gather with other believers.

The second answer I gave was equally heartfelt: “Seek God.”

Over the 35-plus years I have been in ministry, I have discovered that most of the problems that people have will find their solution in seeking God and being committed and obedient in a relationship with God.

Jesus taught his followers, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33 NASB). All what things? Everything. All things. Whatever it is that is needed.

I have known many people who seek God in hard times and find Him in marvelous ways. Unfortunately, when better times come, these same people often slip back into the same old pattern of ignoring or neglecting their relationship with God. Predictably, “all things” are no longer added and they find themselves, once again, in the middle of hard times.

In 1992, I faced some very difficult days. I complained, I griped, I whined, I moped, I became angry ... what I did not do, even though I was the pastor of a church, was to “seek first His kingdom and His righteousness.”

As a result, my personal ordeal lasted some nine months and I became deeply depressed — so depressed, in fact, that I seriously considered leaving the ministry altogether.

When one focuses on the problems, the problems are all one can see. Jesus taught that we were to turn the focus instead upon God with whom “all things are possible.”

In 2007, I encountered problems far more difficult than in those days 15 years previously. This time, however, I did much better. That’s not to say that I didn’t complain, gripe, whine, mope, or feel angry. It’s just that, for the most part, I didn’t live there. Learning from the past, I determined to focus upon God, even though the problems were terribly real and pressing. Life went much, much better.

Recently, something happened unexpectedly that sent me into an emotional and spiritual tailspin. For several days, it was 1992 all over again.

One morning last week, however, while ministering in Illinois, I arose at 4:30 a.m., knelt down by the bedside and simply sought Him. It was to Him that I complained, griped, whined, and even moped.

I honestly expressed my anger to Him about the situation. I reminded Him that He was the one who called me to do this work and that, without His assistance and intervention, I was useless to Him and to everyone else as well. What came, as a result, was peace, confidence, and hope.

If God is the number one priority in our lives, then all the other urgent priorities will eventually fall into place. If we seek God with all that we have, life will change. Our family will change, our relationships will change. Even the church and the pastor will change.

Nearly everything positive in the Christ-like life begins with “showing up,” but that must also be accompanied by “seeking God.”

Show up. Seek God. Everything else will be added. God guarantees it.

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